Homeschool Webtools: Educaplay

Homeschool Webtools: Educaplay

Remember using graph paper as a kid to make word searches? Growing up, I would spend hours making crossword puzzles and word searches for my sisters. I’d put them in little books with riddles and mazes. That was my jam, my friend. So, I’m sure you can imagine the degree of geekiness that kicked in when I discovered a webtool that takes word puzzle. Educaplay is designed as a tool for teachers, allowing them to gamify the information they are teaching. But, I see it as having more value by letting our kids create games and puzzles. We all learn by doing, right? Today’s digital learners don’t want to just learn information, they want to take action related to their learning. [Related Post: Are You Homeschooling for the 21st Century?] Educaplay is one of my favorite homeschool webtools because it gives my family opportunities to be information creators, not just information consumers. We can create crossword puzzles, jumbled sentences, interactive “maps” (which could be any type of image), matching games and more. Users have to discern the best settings for their projected outcome. And once the puzzles are created, they can … [Read on, my friend]

Create a Klimt-Inspired Portrait in Gold

Create a Klimt-Inspired Portrait in Gold

Austrian Gustav Klimt, an Art Nouveau artist, is most known for the decorative style of his artwork. Oddly, Gustav stated, “There is nothing that special to see when looking at me. I’m a painter who paints day in day out, from morning till evening – figure pictures and landscapes, more rarely portraits. However, if you examine his work, especially the paintings of his Golden Phase, you will notice many special things. The scroll work, geometric shapes and golden leaf overlays in Klimt’s paintings set his work apart from other artists of his time. In the Famous Artists (Vol. 1) Online Unit Study, homeschoolers study Klimt’s acclaimed Portrait of Adele Boch Bauer.  This elaborate painting, now known as Woman in Gold, is said to be the greatest painting of Klimt’s golden phase. Click here to see an enlarged image of the painting. Zoom in to see the patterned details. Grab a piece of paper and try to draw some of the patterns you see in the painting. Klimt’s painting has an intriguing history, so interesting in fact that a movie was created about it in 2015. To learn about the theft … [Read on, my friend]

Solar System Online Unit Study

Solar System Online Unit Study

Have an outer space fan in your family? Then the Solar System Online Unit Study is a great choice for your homeschool plans. This homeschool curriculum integrates science, history, art, language arts, math and tech ed as your family travels the solar system. Students access websites and videos and complete hands-on and digital projects, all within Online Unit Studies’ easy-to-use format.       For more astronomy resources, follow my Outer Space Unit Study board on Pinterest.

Create a Mona Lisa Parody

Create a Mona Lisa Parody

Google “most famous paintings”, and you’ll find the Mona Lisa at the top of most lists. It’s also at the top of “the most parodied paintings” list.   Creating your own Mona Lisa parody is a memorable art project for your whole family (that includes you, my homeschoolin’ momma friend). Start by searching online for “Mona Lisa Parody”. Then gather a few simple supplies and start creating.   Supplies Needed: Printed Mona Lisa coloring page. CLICK HERE to print White paper Pencil Markers or colored pencils Tracing pad or window Instructions: Decide the theme of your Mona Lisa. How will you change the picture? What props will you use? How will you change the setting? Print out the Mona Lisa coloring page to trace. Trace the parts of the Mona Lisa that will stay the same. For example, you may want to just trace her face and body so that you can draw a different background. Or you may just trace her body and face so you can draw different hair. If you don’t have a tracing tool, you can tape your template and blank paper to a window to trace. Add the … [Read on, my friend]

Digital Homeschool Project: Virtual Art Gallery

Digital Homeschool Project: Virtual Art Gallery

I’m always on the lookout for nifty webtools for home learning projects. Our kids are digital natives and have different learning needs than we did at their age. Navigating online and using digital tools is second nature. We need to guide them towards productive tech use and assign some digital projects as part of their home education. [Related post: What Homeschoolers Don’t Know (& what they need)] I discovered Emaze, a phenomenal tool for creating presentations. It’s Powerpoint on steroids and a “must have” for your techie homeschool’s webtoolbox. How would your kids like to create a virtual art gallery using Emaze? They can use this project to share their own artwork or to demonstrate what they’ve learned about famous artists and artwork.   Check out this Emaze template that homeschoolers use in the Famous Artists Online Unit Study. For each lesson, students learn about the lives and styles of artists from different art movements. They also create artwork of their own inspired by each artist. Then they create an art exhibit for each artist like this. Click the arrows to “walk” through an exhibit about Vincent Van Gogh. Want an art gallery … [Read on, my friend]

What Are You Teaching Your Kids About Social Media?

What Are You Teaching Your Kids About Social Media?

Let’s talk about social media. For us parents, it’s a hot topic. We wonder, “Should I let my kids engage in social media? When? Is it safe? What if they see something they shouldn’t? What if they get addicted? What rules do I need to set?” The uncertainties go on and on. That’s because we are the first generation of digital moms who need to figure this out. We can’t ignore it. Social media and online relating are here to stay. If we do our job properly, our kids will one day leave our care and make decisions on their own. And, most likely, one of those decisions will be “I will use social media”. So, my momma friend, you’ve got a responsibility now. It is up to you to teach your children healthy social media habits while they are in your care. Just like you need to let them experience money so that they grow up to be fiscally responsible, you need to let them experience social media so that they grow up to be digitally responsible. [Related Post: 5 Tips for Healthy Tech Habits in Your Famiy] Now (ready … [Read on, my friend]

Paint a Self-Portrait Van Gogh Style

Paint a Self-Portrait Van Gogh Style

Vincent Van Gogh is one of the most recognized art masters of all time.  Not only is his Post-Impressionist painting style recognized, but also his face with his bright red hair and gaunt features.  And the reason we identify him so easily is that he left behind over 35 self-portraits. Any study of VanGogh should involve a study of his self-portraits. Visit the National Gallery of Art to learn more about the portraits.  Be sure to zoom in on the paintings to see the details of Van Gogh’s color-usage and brush strokes. You may have noticed that Vincent Van Gogh typically drew his self-portraits with a 3/4 view of the face.With the Vincent Van Gogh Online Unit Study, homeschoolers create self-portraits in the same style as Van Gogh. With little supplies, this project can easily be completed in an afternoon. Supplies needed: Mixed media paper Tempera or acrylic paint Water for paint Medium and small paintbrushes Black sharpie Glue Create your background. Choose a color that expresses your mood. Using your “mood color” in varying hues, paint the entire paper using Van Gogh-like brush strokes. Note: You will be gluing … [Read on, my friend]